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San Francisco 26, The City 7, Us 4, Mr. Rogers 3, Ms. Gavin 3, Mr. Crowley 3, Homelessness 3, Laura 2, Yee 2, Unbridled 2, Mr. Yee 2, Cheryl 2, Gavin Newsom 1, Mr. Garcia 1, Merced 1, Breen 1, Katherine Fine Stein 1, Obama Administration 1, Lagos 1, Vietnam 1,
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  SFGTV2    [untitled]  

    October 28, 2012
    5:30 - 6:00pm PDT  

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too quickly and i think if they got to know the customers better they would be less likely to do that. thank you. >> thank you sir. mr. scary. >> simply it's the budget. the budget is why, why. >> >> without of whack. 1996 it was 3.$5 billion, same people, more services. today is seven point three billion people and same people and less service. the government gives you more of what you don't want and less of what you do want, and we want more service. we have to pay for it. my suggestion is we look at the wasteful spending in government and i conservatively believe there is a minimum 10% waste in government. if you were to take the money that we have and the waste is it's $720 million. that covers more
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than enough to cover the unfunded liabilities. it's the budget and the wasteful spending. thank you. >> all right. thank you sir: mr. yee. >> thank you cheryl. the most important thing -- the most important immediate policy that we can address and adl of us can address is proposition e. that is to move our payroll tax to gross receipt tax and why? because by doing that we can create jobs in san francisco and keep people in san francisco . the kids are growing up and we want them to stay but we need jobs. i agree with mr. crowley with the police force and make sure that is fully staffed and i have been speaking to the police athletic league and they have a program to breen the teenagers to be interns in the police
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force and they would feed into the police cadet program. thank you. >> thank you sir. the next question the city's liabilities are projected to increase in the next coming year. s what new or increased fees should it institute and i will repeat the question and we will begin with mr. crowley. >> i would say that one of the bigger things that we will have before us is the gross receipts tax check that norman talked about trading from the payroll tax which is punitive. the next thing i would do is increase the foot print on mos sony center and that brings in a lot of money to the general fund and erect a multi-purpose area and bring in more money to the coffers and a green industry.
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one reason to bring them in is people come and go into the city of san francisco and that is a large footprint. they come and go. the visitors spend approximately $1 million of revenue in san francisco every hour and save us $1,100 in services and that's what i suspect we should be doing. >> thank you. >> if the city needs to generate new revenue for the budget what fees should it institute? >> well, first of all we need to close loop holes. we can't have big office towers sold and pretending they're at the 1978 price so we need to close the loopholes. we need to encourage small business growth. we can't live on facebook alone and make sure a small business owner with an idea city hall makes it easy to grow and start your business because that will drive a dynamic local economy and i
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think that's the key. >> all right. >> it seems as though we're all avoiding the question, and that is what new fees and what new taxes should we impose and i guess that's because we're all reluctant to do that and we feel the better way is figure out new sources of revenue for the city, so i agree that we need to do things that would enhance the quality of life in san francisco and draw more tourists and expand that center and we're turning away dollars to the city. we need a new facility and we don't have one currently for that and we need to streamline the planning process. i spent seven years on the board of appeals and there are things sitting in the pipeline and create necessary jobs and revenue and we're not taking advantage of that and we need to do things at increased revenue
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and i am reluctant to talk about imposing new fees and taxes. >> ms. gavin. >> i would say one of the things that we have to do would be close the loop holes that we give big business. they come here and they say they're going to provide jobs and jobs and the jobs don't materialize so they don't need the tax break. i also agree with expanding m mosconi and we have to look at everything in the budget and all options need to be on the table. everything needs to be on the table and again as i say taxes cannot just be one solution. everything must be looked at. >> all right. thank you. >> yes. well, i have a novel idea to generate revenue and it's imposing a war profiteers tax on all corporations that do
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business here in san francisco. we have a lot of war profiteers that make billions with business here in san francisco and waging war in the middle east, so i would legislate some kind of tax revenue that would impose that tax and we need to stop gouging average taxpayers, homeowners, consumers in generating revenue for the city. we need to go after the people with the deep pockets and that is the corporations, so that's what i would suggest. >> all right. mr. rogers. >> you know i think this question would have been better asked maybe last year. presently the revenue is 7.5 billion dollars generated and the year before we had only 4 billion so we're almost double what we had in terms of money.
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that being said i think with the gross receipt tax reform that there will also be more money coming in so really we're going to be having plenty of money, but one thing i don't think we should do is try to develop and tax developers and be able to generate money through the general fund by unbridled growth. i think this is actually a cancer for san francisco and that we really should not be doing unbridled growth. we should listen to the voters who voted for proposition m. >> all right. thank you. >> i am excited to give my answer. i'm opposed to all taxes increasing period. the government does not create any wealth. the only way you create wealth is you create
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opportunity. the way you create opportunity you let the free market work. you bring businesses in. you don't put your foot on the throat of businesses. i have a small business here in san francisco. two i have started and successful for 30 years. i wouldn't open another business in san francisco and i'm a city kid. it's the tax regulations and the regulations that break the backs of the small businesses. when they talk about tax receipt versus employee receipts and they say it's going to generate $40 million but cost them another $8 million, i can guarantee it's going to cost three times that much but what it does is drive businesses out of the city. i am against all tax increases period. >> thank you sir. mr. yee. >> >> so this answer to me is several folds. number one, we
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got make sure that the government is efficient, so first thing i will do is ask for an audit of the departments and programs and see what works and what doesn't work. if it doesn't work we will get rid of it. we need to support small businesses and i could go through several things why we should do that. they create 50% of the jobs in san francisco and we also need -- i would support giving business incentives like twitter and create the company here and create more jobs for san francisco. by increasing the jobs opportunities and the business of revenues the revenues will increase without taxes. >> mr. bye. >> thank you. i do agree that efficiency is something that really can increase the way money is used in this city. i am so glad that the pension reform is being dealt with now but we need to go further with that. we need to have caps,
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tiers on pension, keep city money in the city. i don't want any new taxes and i am a homeowner and i will vote for the city college tax but it's terrible we came to this point and we have to tax residents of problems what shouldn't have been there from the get go and supporting small businesses. it's the heart of the city and small businesses and tourism and in discussing tourism you need to discuss homelessness on the street. i have friends from all over the world they are a gawft to howl people on the street and i am happy that the mayor is tackling that working with sfpd and the courts and get the chronically alcoholic and sick people off the streets to really save a lot of money for the city. >> all right thank you. our next question. what steps should the city be taking to
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increase the supply of new housing units? >> district seven has a unique opportunity to help the city. we have needs for growth and we need to develop housing and we have an area and park merced that is going to be developed and i think it's a great area to provide density as long as there is the transportation, public transportation is provided and improved upon and district seven is unique because it's a lot of single family homes and people don't want density there. it's part of the ux new how. >> >> >> and it's unique to grow and provide housing. >> all right. >> thank you. what we need to do is increase the density in san francisco but very
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carefully and incrementally in a way that doesn't destroy the quality of the neighborhoods so we need to work with the planning department and look at those parts of the city to do in fill and projects in district seven or other districts we have sensible models and do housing on transit corridors and retail on the lower flows and don't exceed the height limits in neighborhoods that is not desirable and we have the sixth street corridor and parts of the mission -- i'm sorry. south of the mission where could be increasing the height and having pdr's downstairs. in other words industry serving facilities and still get reasonable housing in those areas. >> all right. ms. gavin. thank you. >> well, unlike some of the fellow candidates here i am
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suing to stop the agreement. the case is in federal court. i don't think park merced needs to be destroyed but this is an important issue in terms of housing and affordable housing. i don't think density is -- i think we have to be very careful about that. i think san francisco is unique in the way -- and we don't look like some cities and we have areas that have problems, but we have a beautiful city, and it's the open space that makes the city very, very beautiful, and we also are federally recognized for sanctuary of rare birds that migrate along the coast. there are about 500,000 and when thinking about growth we need to think about the animals and the environment and the ecology as well. >> all right. mr. lagos.
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>> yes. one of the reasons i moved to san francisco 35 years ago was because there was not a large population here. i moved from los angeles and it's grown 50,000 people in those years. i don't want to see it grow further per se and i'm not a fan of developing more housing but to answer the question if we add more housing i would say loosen up the rules to allow homeowners to create inlaw apartments and that way you open up unit availability at some level for additional housing. other than that i would be opposed to any new construction of any major land use of development for housing including the three major projects in the pipeline. >> mr. rogers. >> if there is going to be
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development it could be in the trans bays terminal that is truly close to rapid transit. walking distance to bart. walking distance to the train that heads down south. this would be an ideal place for a development to occur. a place like park merced where you have 17,000 people would be moving in there. 6,000 parking stalls, a car dependent project, right next to 19th avenue. you folks know how bad that is. how would it be better if we had more people living in park merced? i don't think so. so in my opinion growth should really be stopped. that was what the voters wanted in the 1980's when they voted for proposition m. thank you. >> if i do remember about 30-40
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years ago san francisco was approaching a million i think in population. might have gone over but it was close so i know that we can handle it and i am very strong supporter of the park merced project which ties into how we can increase our tax base income. you turn around and create opportunity. the government cannot create opportunity. the development will create opportunities which will bring employment in. it will bring businesses in and it will turn around and increase our tax base and it has to come from the private sector and i believe the project is a very good project and i support it. >> thank you sir. mr. yee. >> here are my two criterias
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when it comes to housing. i believe in reasonable growth and i believe in healthy robust community process, so here we are. we just developed something in our district on ocean avenue and we had a healthy discussion around the avalon development. broke ground. no protests. people agreed on it. felix circle we had a healthy discussion and we will have additional housing there too. i was just up on crest mount drive. there is controversy over there whether this is reasonable or not and i don't think the developer who is have presented the project is reasonable, but the neighbors in seem to be reasonable because they weren't saying "don't build anything". they said "let's scale down the development somewhat" so i support those notions of reasonable growth,
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community process and i do support proposition c for affordable housing funds. >> thank you sir. >> well, there is some room for increased density but let's face it. this is a finite 49 square miles and that defines san francisco. i am not anti-development by any means but it needs to be done right wherever it's done in conjunction with transportation, water, sewer, electrical infrastructure. transportation is so important when talking about projects like park merced or others. if you talk about building a project anywhere and look at the eir process or elements that have to do with transportation and just rely on muni and near a station or track. we just can't put it off like that and we have one element -- excuse me, probably going to work. no. so it means doing it right in conjunction with all of the existing
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infrastructure including muni. >> all right. mr. crowley. >> thank you cheryl. we are blessed. we are land locked but i believe in this case we need to have balance. we have a housing trust before us this november they believe needs to be replacing the redevelopment agency which has indexes for salaries of folks that can benefit from an affordable housing policy. i would also say that most homes and apartments and condo conversions need to be near transportation and retail wraps. we have things up in hunter's point and treasure island coming on point and with that i hope park merced gets built but not without tenant protections and that's what i suggest. >> thank you. i want to remind you we're taking questions from the audience so if we have more
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questions is a good time to collect those. looks like everybody dealt with the park merced issue so our next question is how would you solve the homelessness problem in san francisco? and we will start with mr. garcia. >> my god, what an easy question. of course we're not going to solve it. the best we can do is try to minimize it and i think we are on the right track and we have a new homeless czar in pl dusty and i like the deal he's dealing with it and a way of dealing with chronic alcoholics and the protections that we have for homeless people are to protect society and not from the homeless people but to deal with that. it's 51-50 and i am sure some people know what that is and the police has the
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power to hold someone who is a threat to themselves or someone else for 72 hours. we need to enact laura's law and mr. dufty is working on that and finding housing for these individuals but not to keep going back to the economy but one solution is improve the economy so we can improve these people's lives. thank you. >> thank you. >> l the homeless problem it's very, very interesting because you know some cities don't -- i think one of the reasons we do have a problem is because of the wonderful social services that we have here in this city and unfortunately as someone who has sat on several committees it's disheartening that just across the east bay, even if you go to oakland, it changes drastically and i think it's one of the reasons people come to san francisco. do they all live
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here? absolutely not. and i think we have to get tough with this issue and the housing authority truly needs some restructuring, so that they can do their mandate which is to house people because that's another issue, but there is money missing there, so i think we have to be tough with that and it's like tough love but because we do care and it's going have to be dealt with. thank you. >> thank you. >> yes. well, homelessness has been a major problem for many years, ever since i came to san francisco we've had homelessness and it's gotten worse, and so i believe that local government hasn't done enough for the homeless, and as i stated in an earlier answer i believe that money for the homeless should come from downtown corporations through the war profit tax and provide housing for the homeless. we have a
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cacantacy rate here that is high and park merced where it's high and i believe those units should be used to house homeless people with the revenue generates from the war profits tax so that's what i would propose in dealing with the homeless issue. >> all right. thank you sir. mr. rogers. >> you know sadly the 50% of the homeless are actually vietnam veterans and so this makes homelessness really a national embarrassment. in the past they had post traumatic stress disorder was claimed to be -- the people had it before they were in war, before they went through a terribly difficult time and they did not provide the people any money.
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fortunately with the obama administration this has changed and these people are coming back and being able to be given some money, so on the federal level i think there's some improvement. when it comes to san francisco i think we need to do more, and i would research this further and answer that question later. thank you. >> all right thank you sir. >> i am under the assumption i'm a problem solver. first you have to identify the problem and i would lump this into three groups. you have people who do not want to be helpedda that want to be live on the street. you have people that don't know where the help is and people people that want it and we need to identify the people that want to be helped that can be helped and there are certain people no matter what you do they do not want help. they want to live on the streets and that in turn we
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should enforce the laws on the books, and that is the only way i believe you can solve the problem. it's not about money. it's about identifying the problem and i believe you've got to identify who the homeless people are first before you can solve it. >> all right thank you sir. mr. yee. >> he is absolutely right. there are different categories of homeless individuals and families. i spent 20 years running an organization which we had programs in the tender loin and we actually served a lot of homeless families and many of the families what do they want? a home for the kids. they want jobs and child care. those are the things we're talking about and justifying the needs. there are many others but not the vast majority. the vast majority of the people that want to get out of the homelessness. there is a small percentage of people that were veterans which is true but
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what happened we got rid of mental health services and that's what happened. once we started getting rid of mental health services we saw increase of people on the street that seemed to need a lot more help. >> thank you. >> there is a wide range, a wide spectrum of the reasons people end up on the street to schizophrenia individuals to destiewt individuals and peel who are optunistic about it and have hotels or other parts of the bay area and all of them need to be dealt with compassionately with resources, with outreach, but i don't think we need -- you know the department of public health is quite familiar with these reasons that people are out on the streets and we have great
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programs like project homeless connect. i was proud to do outreach with that organization, but whether it is people who need service because they are very, very sick for whatever reason, all the way down to people who do need to be moved along by people on the street and law enforcement and programs and not giving handouts and looking at it compassionately and with resources and outreach. >> thank you very much. >> this is a very serious problem. one in four visitors to san francisco cites homelessness as a reason not to come back. we have a new program in november with judge katherine fine stein will put in warrants and citations that
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are by the ones that use most of the services and that is a good beginning. and one other program that was under gavin newsom and we had the issue of surrounding jurisdictions and sending their downtrodden to san francisco. we spend millions of dollars for police and fire services here in san francisco for the same persons. we have the emergency homeless and homeless connects and homeless bound so we spend 694 annually on this and i hope we have more services and compassionate for the folks that are downtrodden. >> i think people would love if san francisco could look like new york city does now and landscape but we don't have the political will to do that and we need to do second best and focus on two things. one, many of
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the homeless have mental illness issues and we need to make sure they get their meds and support laura's law and show compassion but if people are a threat to themselves and others they need to take the meds and second it's us. we in society cannot be enablers and come to san francisco and we are well intentioned and we will solve all of the problems and we can't broke with our resources and these are issues in all of society and we need to take care of our residents first. >> all right. thank you all. our next question, how would you make the streets safer for pedestrian especially on 19th avenue. ms. gavin, let's begin with you. >> well, that's a very interesting questions because 19th avenue i think is highway one and

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